Czech Republic: Prague

Program Snapshot
Semester: Fall or Spring
Offered: Annually
Estimated Dates: Fall: mid-September to late December, Spring: early February to late May
Program Focus: Regional Area Study
Prerequisites: Minimum of 3.0 GPA, or by exception with approval from UPCES. Students must satisfy the Words and Numbers CORE requirement before participating in an overseas program.
Housing: Student apartments
Campus Contact: Blythe Knott Director of Overseas & Off-Campus Prorgrams, 503-768-7296

Program Design

In cooperation with the Undergraduate Program on Central European Studies (UPCES), Lewis & Clark offers this program at Charles University, in Prague, Czech Republic.

The UPCES curriculum infuses topics relevant to Central Europe into a wide variety of liberal arts courses, all taught by a faculty of distinguished scholars, government figures, and industry specialists. UPCES classes meet in the Schebek Palace, a historic building in the center of Prague. Courses bring together European and American students in a small and interactive classroom setting. Outside the classroom, UPCES students explore the cultures of Central Europe firsthand. Program trips, excursions, internships, and immersion activities offer opportunities to discover new places, people, and perspectives.

Prague is an outdoor museum, filled with a rich heritage of art, architecture, music, and history. In the course of one semester, students develop a genuine understanding of Prague and its people, customs, and abundant charms. Prague’s huge historic center is fully included on the UNESCO World Cultural and Natural Heritage List. Hundreds of unique and historically precious buildings dot the city, many capped by towering golden spires. Due to this mixture of artistic architectural styles, Prague has rightfully earned a reputation as one of the most beautiful places to live in all of Europe.

Prague was practically off-limits to Western tourists for almost 50 years. After the Velvet Revolution of 1989, Prague emerged once again as the capital of a sovereign, democratic nation. Today, this “City of a Hundred Spires” has regained its full splendor.

UPCES is based in the beautiful and historic Schebek Palace in the heart of Prague’s downtown. UPCES is located one block from Prague’s Wenceslas Square and minutes away from such landmarks as the National Museum, the Estates Theatre, and the Powder Tower. The history of the building dates to the time of King Charles IV (1316-1378), who founded Charles University in 1348. Since then, the building has served as a palace and as the headquarters for the State Bank of Czechoslovakia. Today, its splendid classrooms, palatial hallways, and modern study centers offer program students an unmatched learning environment.


Requirements Fulfilled: 

General Education – This program fulfills the Global Perspectives general education requirement for students who successfully complete 8 or more semester credits.

Credits: Credit earned varies based on courses completed but students may earn up to 19 credits. (Overloads are not permitted.)

Curriculum: At UPCES, students enroll in 5 courses (including the required Elementary Czech Language course) for a total of 16 academic credits. UPCES courses are listed under the Charles University Faculty of Humanities. UPCES offers courses in a wide range of subjects. All courses are taught in English.

Excursions: Each semester, UPCES arranges 4 trips each semester in the Czech Republic and its neighboring countries. UPCES trips are designed for students to experience the cultural diversity of the region. Students learn about the history of each city and their contemporary cultures, politics, and economies. This includes a weekend trip to Krakow, and day trips to Český Krumlov, Litoměřice; Kutná Hora; and Karlovy Vary.

Student Life

Housing: On this program, students live in apartments shared with other UPCES students. A typical UPCES apartment includes 3 - 4 bedrooms, a living room, a full kitchen, a full bathroom, and a half bathroom. All apartments are fully furnished and include internet connection, kitchenware, bedding, towels and household appliances. Each room contains a twin bed, a desk, a chair, a desk lamp, a bureau or a wardrobe and a wastebasket. The apartments are decorated in styles ranging from classic European to modern.

* Please note: The UPCES housing portal lists different costs based on single or double rooms. Lewis & Clark students pay the same amount regardless of housing type. 

Cultural Activities: Each semester, UPCES organizes excursions to various museums, events, and cultural activities around Prague.

Things to do in Prague:

  • Outdoors - Prague is world-renowned for its parks and outdoor spaces. The city center is surrounded by large green spaces perfect for strolling, playing sports, and relaxing with friends. For additional entertainment, cross the picturesque bridges spanning the Vltava River. Prague is also well-known for its many opportunities for hiking, with excellent trails right within the city limits.
  • Sports - Without question there are two sports that rise far above the rest in the Czech Republic. These sports are soccer and ice hockey. In Prague, both sports are represented by two rival teams, Sparta and Slavia. The value of a night at a sporting event is tremendous. Tickets are affordable, and there are plenty of delicious snacks that can be bought on the cheap.
  • Theater - For centuries, Prague has been an international center for theater. The city is dotted with historic theater halls with storied pasts. In fact, Mozart premiered two of his operas in the beautiful Estates Theatre in Old Town. Today, it seems that every night of the week there is a ballet, symphony, opera, dance, or drama performance to attend in Prague. Students can purchase most theater tickets at generously discounted prices. Prague is also on the world concert circuit and attracts excellent performers. 
  • Outdoor markets - If you’re looking for a treat, a gift, or just a very special atmosphere, head to Prague’s many outdoor markets. The squares of Prague bustle with markets from March to October. The city’s Christmas and Easter markets are the most famous, and rank among the best in Europe. Old Town Square draws the biggest crowds, with vendors selling hand-made goods and culinary treats. Farmers’ markets are ever more popular in Prague as well, so for fresh local produce, head to Namesti Republiky, Jiriho z Podebrad, or the riverside of the Vltava on Saturday mornings.
  • Festivals - Prague hosts a seemingly endless number of music, film, art, and literature festivals throughout the year. Music festivals include the Prague Spring International Music Festival, the Autumn International Music Festival and the Prague Organ Festival. Film festivals include the Febiofest, the One World Fest, FAMU Fest, and Echoes of the Karlovy Vary Film Festival.


2023-2024 Fee Breakdown*

Total Fee (includes Tuition, Program Fee, and Health & Wellness Fee): $39,385

Tuition: $30,958

Program Fee: $8,390

Health & Wellness Fee: $37**

Included in the program fee are room/housing, board/meals, and administrative fees. Not included are airfare, passport and visa expenses, primary insurance coverage, photographs, books, immunizations, and incidentals. *Fees are updated every February for the following academic year.

**The Health & Wellness Fee supports the operations of Wellness Services staff in delivering pre-program orientation services, as well as in providing health-related consultation regarding participant health needs. All students in the College of Arts and Sciences pay a mandatory fee of $37 per semester.

Stipend: Students will receive a stipend to cover the cost of meals and transportation costs not covered by the program fee.

Estimated Airfare (Round Trip PDX to PRG): $1,000 - $1,500

Estimated Travel Document Fees: Approximately $115

Estimated Health Insurance Fee: $1,906

All students participating in overseas programs are automatically enrolled in iNext, a supplemental travel insurance program. The fee for iNext is covered in the program cost. However, students are also required to have comprehensive health insurance during their time abroad. All students participating in overseas programs, both abroad and domestic, are automatically enrolled in the College’s student health insurance program. Similar to a regular semester on-campus, students participating in overseas programs may waive enrollment in the student health insurance program if they have other comprehensive health insurance (e.g., through a parent, guardian or employer) that 1) provides coverage for them in the geographic region in which they will be studying and 2) includes mental health benefits. Click here for more information regarding health insurance & overseas programs.

Program Preparation

Application Process: This program has a dual application process. Student must first submit a Lewis & Clark Application one year before the start of the program. Once admitted by Lewis & Clark, the students will receive instructions for submitting their secondary application to UPCES and will receive a separate notification letter of admission. Please keep a digital copy of your essays and other application materials as you will need to submit these similar materials to UPCES. Please note that this secondary application process can be as late as the semester preceding your scheduled participation.

For more information about the application process, click here.

Travel: Students usually fly into the Prague airport (PRG), where they are met by a member of the UPCES staff and transported to orientation.

Visa: Students will be required to apply for a visa in order to participate in this program. More information will be provided upon admission to the program.

Country-Specific Health Information: Click here to view specific health information for people traveling to the Czech Republic.

State Department Country Information: Click here to visit the State Department’s Czech Republic page.

Prague, Czech Republic